Butcher Babies: Soul-Sucking With Manson, Loving Leatherface + More
Hot chicks that play heavy metal and like horror movies? That’s a dream girl for most metalheads, since those are the serious and shared interests of many headbangers.
Butcher Babies are just a heavy metallist’s dreams come true, lead by two sexy females who have combined their love for aggressive rock with gory movies, making them the hottest draw on L.A.’s Sunset Strip.
The group is fronted by hotties Carla Harvey and Heidi Shepherd. They play the hardest of rock laced with imagery from the horror flicks they love.
But it’s not just about a gimmick. The girls are as serious as a funeral about their craft, meshing the look with the sound.
The group is about to embark on a tour with Marilyn Manson –the ladies are not afraid the nefarious shock rocker will suck the souls from their bodies, either! They are also are gearing up for the release of their Century Media debut sometime this summer, which has been preceded by the SiriusXM Liquid Metal staple “Axe Wound.”
Noisecreep spoke to the ladies and guitarist Henry Flury about what’s on the docket for Butcher Babies as they navigate the murky metal waters of 2013. They talk gimmicks, the unique challenges any industry presents for women and loving Leatherface. Yes, that Leatherface.
Do you feel you have to fight harder to be taken seriously, not simply because you are women playing heavy metal, but because you have a bit of a “gimmick” that’s not really cheesy gimmick but one that is pretty common in metal?
Carla: We do, but we’ve been well-received by the metal community. People come out to see us play, and are like,’ You are the real deal,’ which made us proud, especially when our fellow musicians say that. At first, we do have a hard time. Women in any career field have a harder time. For Heidi and myself -she was in radio and I was a mortician- it’s nothing we’re not used to already. It lights a fire under our ass to show people we are for real. We grew up listening to metal. This is not, ‘Hey, let’s go be in a metal band’ because it’s trendy.
Heidi: It has come from passion. We all grew up loving metal and our entire band is 100 percent metal. It’s where our passion lies. There isn’t anything else in the world we wish we were doing.
Henry: Once [people] see a show, they realize. At first, they assume we don’t know what we are doing by looking at the band. Then we hear about how much they liked it after the show.
Heidi: People come up to us and say, ‘Man I didn’t know what to expect, with two girls, but that was brutal.’ It’s incredible to see the reaction. Once we play for massive amounts of people, and there are more people seeing us every time we tour, they see that this is real.
Watch ‘Mr. Slowdeath’ Video
Carla, you were a mortician, which is not a female-dominated profession, either. Did you leave the job to do Butcher Babies full time?
Carla: We are all full time. We don’t have time for day jobs. We are blessed to be able to do it full time. Being a Mortician is a 9-to-5 job and no one hires you for that when you have to go on tour. Me and Heidi are kindred spirits. We’ve been tomboys; we’re both girly girls. We love being the females in the metal scene. If I was a boy, I’d be living in my mom’s basement because of the stuff I like.
As a girl, it’s like you have to be better since everyone is watching your every move. We work our asses off. That’s why we are so close.
What are you expecting on this tour with Manson, since he had some drama last tour with Rob Zombie?
Heidi: We have heard so many things. Every tour is different, regardless of how he runs his ship. I met him the other night at the movie theater and he was so nice to me. I am excited to share this experience with one of my idols.
Manson goes to the movies? Did you talk to him for long?
Heidi: It was so random. I walked up to him, ‘Hi, I’m Heidi, I am going on tour with you.’
Carla: Did he suck your soul out of your body?
Heidi: No, he hugged me.
So can you share a recording story for “Axe Wound?”
Heidi: I couldn’t speak when recording ‘Axe Wound.’ I had to take treatments to push through the day, but I think it came out wonderful. I was so stressed out that day because of my health. But [producer] Mudrock was able to work with us to make it come out interesting.
Watch ‘Axe Wound’ Video
Since horror-inspired theatrics are such a part of Butcher Babies and your show, what’s your favorite horror movie and why?
Carla: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. I am in love with Leatherface and always have been. I love big creepy misfit people that just need a hug. I have not seen the new one; I haven’t had time except to be in the studio, maybe I will be able to catch it while on tour.
Heidi: It’s a toss up for me with Monster and House of a Thousand Corpses. Monster was a well-executed movie and creepy. It tackles the good and the bad of the female life. House of a Thousand Corpses is incredible; Rob Zombie did an amazing job and that whole hillbilly, creepy thing? It always scares me. Being on tour, we’ve driven through places like that.
Marilyn Manson and Butcher Babies tour dates:
01/18/13 – Milwaukee, WI @ Eagle’s Ballroom
01/19/13 – Cincinnati, OH @ Bogart’s
01/20/13 – Columbus, OH @ The LC Pavilion
01/22/13 – Detroit, MI @ The Fillmore
01/23/13 – Cleveland, OH @ House of Blues
01/25/13 – Wallingford, CT @ The Dome
01/26/13 – Boston, MA @ House of Blues
01/28/13 – Montreal, QC, CA @ Metropolis
01/29/13 – Oshawa, ON, CA @ General Motors Centre
01/30/13 – Hamilton, ON, CA @ Hamilton Place Theatre
02/01/13 – Sudbury, ON, CA @ Sudbury Arena
02/04/13 – Winnipeg, MB, CA @ MTS Centre
02/05/13 – Moose Jaw, SK, CA @ Mosiac Place
02/06/13 – Saskatoon, SK, CA @ TCU Place
02/08/13 – Calgary, AB, CA @ Stampede Corral
02/09/13 – Edmonton, AB, CA @ Shaw Conference Centre
02/11/13 – Vancouver, BC, CA @ Queen Elizabeth Theatre
02/13/13 – Portland, OR @ Roseland Theatre
02/19/13 – San Francisco, CA @ Warfield Theatre
02/20/13 – Anaheim, CA @ The Grove of Anaheim
02/21/13 – Los Angeles, CA @ Club Nokia
02/23/13 – Las Vegas, NV @ House of Blues
Hell & Heaven Metal Fest 2013:
*Butcher Babies performance date TBA. The festival is 05/18/13 and 05/19/13
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